Confronting negative self-belief

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This topic contains 1 reply, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  anita 11 months, 1 week ago.

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    Understanding the negative belief I have about myself that helps keep certain patterns active wasn’t actually hard. I’d thought it might be something hidden, but it plays on me quite actively. I guess its not hidden because I live with it as a truth. I just dress it up differently at different times

    At some level I believe I am not a good person, and that if people see the real me they would reject me and be right to do so.

    This belief is the basis of my fear…fearing people will see my bad qualities and reject me. This underpins my people pleasing-I need to work hard to be a better person, to try to change what I see as a fundamental flaw. I need to work hard to make amends for the fact I’m not a good person. I also need to work hard to hide the fact I’m not a good person so people won’t reject me. It is the reason I feel guilty for a lot of things-because I believe I am in the wrong on some fundamental level and it’s just a matter of time until that comes out. It underpins my need for validation from external sources…I can’t validate myself because I think I am flawed, so I don’t truly trust my motives.

    I have a bit of a cycle….

    I can’t validate myself because how do I know it’s not just my bad qualities fooling me? So I look to other people wanting them to tell me that I am a good person, that I am doing the right thing. But then, if they do validate me in that way, I think it is because I have them fooled. That I am just fake and manipulative and deceptive. And then I think that as long as other people are happy, that I am helping to make other people happy that it doesn’t really matter if I am a good person or not. So I try to focus on their feelings, fixing problems they have, ensuring they are happy. If I act like a good person then the knowledge that I’m not can only hurt me. And then I think that being that way makes me generous so maybe I’m actually a really good person with very high morals. Then that makes me feel important and powerful and I feel self-righteous and want to in still my moral standards in others. Then become critical of others, and then realise being so critical is very judgemental and isn’t caring and kind. This confirms that I’m really not a good person and have been fooling myself in deluded self-importance/self-righteousness and it makes me act badly. Then I’m back to the start.

    Currently I’m in a place where I think this belief is a bit of a cop out-like it lets me try to be a good person, while giving me a scapegoat for not putting in true effort to be a good person. Like setting the benchmark low, so less effort can seem like more. I can hold high standards but never truly expect myself to live up to them. It’s a way to inflate my ego. Thinking I’m a bad person to actually feel good about myself. It also acts as safety from vulnerability. If I think I am a bad person then I can focus on trying to be a good person…and not focus on being genuine and expressing myself honestly warts and all. I guess it probably also masks hurt/anger from childhood that I don’t really process.

    That’s why I want to work on it-I want to truly reflect my values….but it’s also why I really don’t want to work on it, cause being vulnerable and going outside my comfort zone is very scary! Plus I truly don’t know what sort of hurt/anger I’ve been bottling over the years-or what form of expression that would take. I feel like challenging this belief is drawing the energy of the Tower tarot card into my life-disaster, destruction, confrontation, upheaval, sudden change-I hate the idea of that!! Can I change without that process? Especially if this belief is the reason I fear these processes in the first place. What is it I fear. Rejection and loss.


    • This topic was modified 11 months, 1 week ago by  Meander.


    Dear Meander:

    I believe that there is no way to change a core belief such as the one you described without upheaval, no short cut, no way around it. What can be done is make such a change slowly, gradually. Every time you feel that upheaval, you can take a break, and let the dust settle, so to speak.

    There is nothing you can do to convince yourself that you are a good person, once this core belief is in place (that you are not a good person) except to go back to the time that belief was formed and see the reality of those circumstances, see and believe, with time and work. You may need the help of a quality psychotherapist to do this, little at a time.


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